created by TAKASHI AMANO


In 1993, the world’s first dedicated scissors for pruning/trimming of aquatic plants were born. To cater for the needs for sharp cutting edge with minimal damage to plants and excellent usability in underwater environment, Trimming Scissors (Straight Type) were launched as ADA’s first product in its scissors lineup. Subsequently, ADA has been developing unique scissors for versatile applications to enable precise works for various types of layouts. In this story, we trace how ADA’s unique signature scissors were developed and turned into a product.

“Joy of using tools started to grow in hobbyists’ hearts”

With the improvement of techniques in aquatic plants layout, a variety of layout has increased and the needs for scissors with various functionality arose accordingly. Amano said the ideas on the improvements to achieve enhanced functions of tools kept coming into his head while he was making layouts. After maturing the ideas and by trial and error, he developed and launched various types of scissors, which were well accepted by aquarists. Amano analyzed that this favorable response was not merely because of the products’ high functionality. “I think the joy of using tools started to grow in hobbyists’ hearts. Being choosy about the tools to use would have brought more fun to aquascaping,” he said.

Birth of
“Ultimate Scissors”
– Pro-Scissors Wave

Featured by innovative S-shaped wavy line which was a sensation at the time of launch, Pro-Scissors Wave was developed as scissors perfect for pruning short foreground plants and detailed trimming by glass walls and at the tank corners. In the past, fast-growing Glossostigma was known to be hard to maintain over a long period; and Amano thought one of the reasons was unavailability of scissors which cut short aquatic plants effectively. He assumed that failure to trim Glossostigma satisfactorily led to overgrowing and deterioration of the plant.
“Maintenance is important in planted aquarium and it is harder than making. I thought providing sufficient care with appropriate tools is a major key to success in maintenance. And through the seeking of scissors for trimming plants in hard-to-get-to areas such as tank corners, this S-like wavy shape was made. I think Pro-Scissors Wave are the ultimate scissors.”
Trimming Scissors (Curve Type) are also curved scissors. The difference from Pro-Scissors Wave is that the former is more versatile scissors while the latter is more for detailed trimming. Trimming Scissors (Curve Type) are recommended for efficient pruning of stem plants and foreground plants including Eleochalis acicularis and Glossostigma, while Pro-Scissors Wave are flexible in trimming angle and thus suitable for both pruning wide areas and detailed trimming in small areas.

“Having many different types of tools makes the maintenance easier and above all, it’s fun!”

Planted aquarium becomes more perfect by using different types of scissors for each application. “Even when making a complicated layout, just one pair of trimming scissors is sometimes enough. But if you want to make a layout very carefully and efficiently and at the same time want to enjoy aquascaping, it is a good idea to have many different types of tools. It makes the maintenance easier and above all, it’s fun!”, Amano said. For instance, willow moss on driftwood is maintained by appropriate trimming. For this purpose, Pro-Scissors Spring are a better tool for neat finishing as compared to Pro-Scissors Wave and Trimming Scissors. Compact, palm-sized Pro-Scissors Spring featuring trimming flexibility were developed specifically for small tanks and also for trimming small, narrow areas in a tank with driftwood lying across it. Keeping aquatic plants in more beautiful and healthier conditions was made possible by using different types of scissors made for different purposes.

“Being particular about how to make things and do maintenance to pursue the very best”

Exceptional holding comfort is another feature of ADA scissors. “For example, we have repeatedly fine tuned the size of finger holes,” Amano said. “We have been making things by using ideas such as ‘this type of scissors is necessary for this case’ or ‘it should be like this in this case’, which are derived from numerous trial and error as well as making and maintenance of thousands of layouts.” ADA’s particular focus to the finest details may not be apparently perceptible, but it lets the users feel great difference. That is why NA Goods have always been evolving to pursue greater excellence in quality.
Regardless of type, the making of ADA scissors involves blade polishing process. Its purpose is not only to ensure sharpness which keeps the impact on the plant to a minimum but it is also to achieve the beautiful appearance. Amano said, “It’s not like scissors are good enough if they can cut, but a beautiful shape also matters. Whether it is tool or anything else, I want to be particular about beautiful design. I think it’s wonderful to have positive thinking like ‘I want to make better things’ and use tools with sensitiveness. Being particular about how to make things and do maintenance to pursue the very best –this can help create real fun in the hobby and in anything else, I guess. There is a joy of using tools in maintenance as in creating layout.”